Puerto Princesa: The Country's Ecotourism Capital
In the heart of Palawan lies its capital, Puerto Princesa City. It is an urban center nestled in between lush forests and beautiful beaches. But take note that many locals here in Puerto Princesa are either farmers or fishermen. The influx of tourists add vibrancy to the city's economy since ecotourism is one of the city's major attractions.
Since typhoons or storms seldom reach the boundaries of Puerto Princesa, the place is an ideal getaway. However, you should take note that there will still be rainfall during the wet season. The month of September usually comes with a lot of rain. This simply means that the best time to visit here will be during the summer from April to June.
A Bit of Puerto Princesa History
The city was named after a Spanish princess born in 1864. Initially, the place was known as Puerto de la Princesa. After the said Spanish princess's untimely death, the town's name was changed to its present name. Its bay area soon became the center of Spanish naval operations. The town became the provincial capital during the American Administration. Years later, in 1970, the town was inaugurated as a city of the Philippines.
Things to See and Do in Puerto Princesa
People come to Puerto Princesa not only for the dive sites that abound in the area, but also for its wonderful festivities, amusement sights, beaches, water sports, and nature trails. Some of the festivities in the city are Love Affair with Nature mangrove planting becomes the highlight, Cherry Festival where the city's founding is celebrated, Pangalipay sa Baybay features coastal cleanups, parades, and fireworks. The Seafood Festival is a time to feast on the city's authentic cuisine.
Other than the many feasts that go on throughout an entire year, there are key sights that visitors might want to check out. The Capitol Square Complex is a great place to hang out. Food kiosks and restaurants are lined up here, making it a great place to hang out or grab something to eat. The Mendoza Park was named after a World War II hero whose remains are buried in a memorial in this said park. Now, if all that strolling has gotten you hungry then walk on to Baker's Hill where they offer sumptuous pastries and snacks.
Diving is always a popular activity in Puerto Princesa. There are dozens of dive sites spanning the bay area. Honda Bay, Taytay Bay, Port Barton, Shark Rock, and Royalist Shoal are only a few places of interest. A lot of diving enthusiasts that come here every year enjoy these said dive spots. Divers may contact any of the dive shops that offer such services. A few of these said shops are Moonshadow, Island Divers and Last Frontier Dive.
Puerto Princesa Dining
There are a lot of options for you when choosing a place to eat in Puerto Princesa. Restaurants here serve the best of Filipino Dishes and other international cuisine. Kamayan Restaurant, a popular chain of restaurants in the country, serves the best of Filipino cuisine. Lotus Garden serves an array of mouthwatering Japanese food. Ka Lui serves some of the best seafood in the city, which is evident since you'll usually find a line of people waiting to get in.
Another place to get your sumptuous seafood is at Badjao Seafood Restaurant. Now if you're looking for some place that serve exotic food then you may want to try Kinabuch's where they serve local dishes including a woodworm dish. Food prices range from less than $10 to more than $20.
Puerto Princesa Accommodations
There is a wide array of accommodation options in Puerto Princesa City. You may choose from hotels of different grades or if you're backpacking then you can go for the modestly priced inns or pension houses. It's always a good practice to have a look around and before taking a room. Some of the places you might like to stay are Royal Oberoi, Ardent Suites, The Legend Hotel, and Asturias Hotel.
Other accommodations of note include Niko's Cabanas and Restaurant, Puerto Pension, Liberty Park Pension, Badjao Inn and Restaurant, and Palawan Village Hotel. Rates for mid-range and higher rated hotels start around $80 while the budget class ones and pension houses and inns go for less than $30 or so. The top rated hotels and resorts have rates starting around $100.
Puerto Princesa City is a great place to look for great dive. The city is not only famous for its dive spots, people come here to relax, unwind, and enjoy the wonders of this tropical paradise.
Puerto Princesa is the city capital of Palawan, considered as a first class among the cities of the Philippines. The city lies along the mid-section of the long island of the Palawan province. It has a land area totalling 253,982.00 hectares stretching to over 106 kilometers and it has the narrowest breadth which is 8.5 kilometers found in the Barangay Bahile.
One of the city's pride is the Subterranean River National Park. The site features a very spectacular limestone landscape display in its underground river. The river flows directly to the sea. The underground river represents a habitat for conservation biodiversity. The site is in fact nominated in the search for the new 7 wonders of the world. This is a perfect tourist spot for those who new in Palawan. The river is considered as one of the most beautiful and natural subterranean river in the entire world. The mouth of the cave lies a clear lagoon which is framed by trees. Large monitor lizards, monkeys and squirrels find refuge on the beach that is near the cave. The park is now declared as a premier and class A ecotourism destination and is already included in UNESCO World Heritage Site list due to the rivers outstanding value for nature.
Puerto Princessa is rich in powdery and pristine white beaches and you can find them anywhere in the island. These water sceneries provide quite a contrast to green canopies. The clear waters that like emerald is totally a fascination. Island near the Honda Bay gives the beach lovers uncrowded and unspoilt haven that you can never find anywhere else in the Philippines. One of the many beaches of Puerto Princesa is the Nagtabon Beach. It is located in the western coast of Palawan and is a two hour ride from the city proper.
Dive sites can also be found in the city. Ranging from five to forty five minutes away from offshore of the beach, you can experience an underwater expedition you'll never forget. The Red cliff is one of the famous dive sites of the place and is located within the Puerto Princesa Bay. Several coral colonies and reef fishes can be found in the site. You can also see rays and turtles settled on the soft corals and on the sand. Among the other creatures sighted in this cliff are whale sharks, manta rays and hammerhead sharks. In this site, you will experience swimming along with most fantastic marine creations in the Philippines.